Irritable bowel syndrome, called IBS, can be a very uncomfortable, embarrassing, and sometimes, painful problem. There is no known direct cause, and it troubles some 10 to 20 percent of adults who are otherwise perfectly healthy. Symptoms of IBS include cramps, bloating, spells of diarrhea, and/or spells of constipation. Typically, the cramps subside after passing gas or having a bowel movement.
Most commonly, the prescribed remedy is to avoid triggers. However, it takes most sufferers awhile to discover what their own particular triggers are. This is because some kinds of food that are usually considered very healthy can trigger an attack when people suffer from IBS. Another problem with IBS is that it often gets mistaken, even by doctors, for another condition like colitis or Crohn’s disease.
Marijuana and IBS: Hurts Or Helps?
Of course, natural solutions include avoiding triggers of IBS, and these can be different for different people.
In fact, some things that will trigger an awful bout of cramps will be exactly the thing that helps soothe them in other folks. That seems to be the case for marijuana. It affects different people in different ways.
Of course, medical marijuana isn’t legal in every state. This is only really for people who live in places where the doctor can write a prescription or would travel to those places for a temporary treatment option. Otherwise, the treatment is more trouble than it is worth.
Weed: Trigger vs. Remedy
Some say grass does trigger bouts of IBS. Since these were just comments from people who suffer from this problem, the conclusion isn’t really based upon a scientific study. It is hard to say if it is the drug or something else. As is commonly known, marijuana can make people hungry. It is also hard to say if the bout of IBS was caused by the grass or a bout of overeating.
Others say that marijuana has actually been an effective treatment. They say that this drug can take the edge off of discomfort and pain, and that is seems to have a soothing effect on their entire body. However, even many of these people say that they are not sure if the drug makes the pain go away of if it just makes the so they don’t care any longer.
Other Common IBS Triggers
Too Much Fat: Fat is the first culprit when it comes to considering IBS triggers. That is because fat is the biggest stimulant for the digestive system. Of course, bodies love fat because it provides the with easy-to-use energy.
However, people who suffer from IBS should be wary about getting their body too excited, even about some extra fat. Typically, a diet that is low in fat is suggested to keep IBS at bay.
Insoluble Fiber: Normally, insoluble fiber is part of a healthy diet. This is the kind of fiber that doesn’t mix with water, so it passes virtually unchanged through the bowel. For many people, adding insoluble fiber to their diet helps them stabilize blood sugar and enjoy regular bowel movements, and this kind of food is generally considered health for average people.
However, that same level of activity can trigger bouts of uncomfortable and even painful cramps and constipation in people who suffer from IBS.
This kind of fiber tends to be found in high-fiber grain products, like high-fiber bread or breakfast cereals. Some very sensitive people may even react to lower levels of insoluble fiber and might have to avoid most grains.
Gluten: Gluten is a protein found in wheat and some other types of grain. Even though actually being intolerant to gluten is thought to be very rare, many more people may be somewhat sensitive to it. Since gluten is also found in lots of grain it might be hard to tell if the problem is gluten or insoluble fiber.
Stress: The link between stress and IBS is not clearly understood, but folks who keep statistics about patient complaints believe that is is clear that there is one. Also, folks who suffer from this condition report having worse symptoms when they also have bouts of anxiety.
For some, natural solutions like meditation and yoga might help. For others, a prescription for anxiety may be helpful. Of course, this stress-induced IBS may also be the type that is remedied by medicinal marijuana where it is legal.
What Causes IBS?
The likely answer is that IBS is caused in different people for different reasons, so it isn’t always easy to find the triggers. Likewise, the causes of IBS for each individual may be the key to discovering the best remedies. The best course of action is probably to visit the doctor and discuss a variety of treatment options. It may take some testing to find the key to relief of IBS.